John 14 opens in the midst of Jesus’s dialogue, a continuation from the previous chapter. The evening had begun with Jesus, their Rabbi and Messiah, humbly washing the disciples’ feet, followed by Jesus’s troubling statements that He was going away, and they could not come.
The disciples are troubled. Jesus leaving them is an unimaginable situation for the those who had left everything to follow Him. Though they claim they would lay down their lives for Him, Jesus predicts that the disciples will fail Him.
The timing of this text is during the end of the week of the Feast of Tabernacle, about a half year before Jesus goes to the cross. Jesus is in a debate with religious unbelief, confronting their own sin. He identifies for them what true belief is and what saving faith looks like in the believer’s life. Jesus presents three tests of genuine saving faith for unbelief to consider: the test of fatherhood, the test of the use of God’s Word in a believer’s life, and the test of the works of God’s children.
John 8:31-59 focuses on the truth of the Word of God. The second test of genuine saving faith and of true discipleship is evidenced in our relationship with and responsibility to the Word of God in our lives.
As Jesus continues to teach from the temple during the Feast of Tabernacle, He interacts with religious unbelief. We learn from John 8:30-31 that some have proclaimed faith in Jesus. The life of a true believer will bear forth the fruit of repentance. While some profess faith in Christ, others confess faith in Him. This passage in John helps us discern between profession and confession. Earlier in this book, we read how some professed faith in Jesus as King, trying to forcibly crown Him. However, these people did not confess Him as Savior and Lord. John writes his gospel with the purpose of proving that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, so that we might believe, and in believing, that we might have life through His name, not just professing but confessing Him as Lord.
C.H. Spurgeon wrote in Lectures to My Students, "Cautious hesitancy is, in 9 cases out of 10, cowardly betrayal. The best policy is never to be diplomatic but to proclaim every atom of the truth of God's Word so far as God has taught it to you."
Paul continues to protect the Corinthian church with humility and transparency, pouring himself out so they will avoid spiritual relapse. He does not want them to entertain those seeking to pull them away from the sufficiency of Christ.
Growing deeper in understanding our faith naturally leads to living it out in a meaningful way.
People who are considered moral need God too. Many moral people can sound Christian without actually knowing Christ. There is only one Judge who knows the whole truth. Romans 2:2-16 describes four ways that God judges moralists.
Pop culture is filled with voices talking about love. Our culture is obsessed with the concept, but their understanding of love is greatly limited because they don't know the truth. Mere interest in a subject doesn't make one an authoritative voice on it. Who will you listen to when determining the character of true love?
Last week we learned from 2 John that the truth makes true love possible. Outside truth, there is no love. This week, 3 John teaches us that actions make true love identifiable.
The hippie movement promoted the idea of "free love" without guardrail or principles. This has trickled down to our society's popular advice to "follow your heart." Some Christians even say it doesn't matter what you believe, as long as you love people. Our world does not understand the truth about love.
The apostle John wrote about the relationship between love and truth in three letters. 2 John is a study in the doctrine of love and truth; 3 John explores their practice; and 1 John applies these principles to our understanding of salvation and assurance.
Life can be difficult even during holidays. How can we handle it when hardship keeps coming? The apostle John knew about enduring affliction. He wrote five New Testament letters to assure hurting people of who Jesus really was.
John 1:14 summarizes who Jesus was and is. When we reflect on the truth of this one verse, we find that we are infinitely spiritually wealthy in Christ. We have been given everything that is needed for life and godliness both here and in eternity (2 Peter 1:3, Ephesians 1:3-14). Because of who Jesus is, the Christian does not have an option to disobey or quit. We have been outfitted to persevere.
This psalm asks a significant question on this July 4th weekend, a question relates to the current moral character of our country. Any ungodly nation needs believers in its midst to send out God's light and truth to individual men and women.
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